Why are a Third of People Indian and Chinese? Trade, Industrialization and Demographic Transition
Oded Galor and
Andrew Mountford ()
No 3136, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers
This research argues that international trade has played a significant role in the timing of demographic transitions across countries and has thereby been a major determinant of the distribution of world population and a prime cause of sustained differences in population growth and income levels across countries. In industrial economies international trade enhanced the specialization in the production of skilled-intensive goods and stimulated technological progress. The rise in the demand for skilled labour induced an investment in the quality of the population, expediting the demographic transition, stimulating technological progress and further enhancing the comparative advantage of these industrial economies in the production of skilled intensive goods. In non-industrial economies, in contrast, the specialization in the production of unskilled-intensive goods that was brought about by international trade reduced the demand for skilled labour and provided limited incentives to invest in population quality. The demographic transition was therefore delayed, increasing further the abundance of unskilled labour in these economies and enhancing their comparative disadvantage in the production of skilled intensive goods. International trade has therefore widened the gap between the technological level as well as the skill abundance of industrial and non-industrial economies, enhancing the initial patterns of comparative advantage and generating sustained differences in income per capita across countries.
Keywords: International trade; Demographic transition; Industrial revolution; Growth; Human capital (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F11 F43 N30 O40 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dev
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (37) Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at email@example.com
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:3136
Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
Access Statistics for this paper
More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 33 Great Sutton Street, London EC1V 0DX.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().